Lupus Advocates Boost Funds for Lupus Research in Omnibus Appropriations Bill
Statement from Sandra C. Raymond, Chief Executive Officer of the Lupus Foundation of America in response to passage of the US House Appropriations Bill.
The Omnibus Appropriations bill passed by the US House of Representatives on March 22 includes increased funding for critical lupus research and education programs, including $6.5 million for the National Lupus Patient Registry at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and over $37 billion for the National Institutes of Health, the single largest source of lupus research funding.
We are thrilled that Congress has responded favorably to lupus advocates by providing a $500,000 increase for the CDC’s Lupus Registry, a $3 billion increase for NIH and $5 million to continue funding for the Lupus Research Program at the Department of Defense. This funding is a huge boost to our efforts to better understand the true impact of lupus, identify who it strikes and why, speed time to diagnosis and find new treatments for the 1.5 million Americans living with lupus.
We applaud the leaders of the Congressional Lupus Caucus – Representatives Tom Rooney (R-FL), Bill Keating (D-MA), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) – and the members of Congress who made this funding increase possible.
Thank you to our national network of lupus advocates and the thousands of people who joined together on Wednesday to send a strong message to Capitol Hill during the Foundation’s National Advocacy Summit. The increases for FY 2018 demonstrate that your efforts makes a difference. We will continue to work with Congress and the lupus community to build upon this victory.
The Omnibus Appropriations bill next will be considered by the U.S. Senate. Once final legislation has been approved by both chambers, it must then be signed into law by the president. We will update constituents on the progress of this legislation as well as our ongoing efforts to further expand programs that support our mission – to improve the quality of life for all people affected by lupus.